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Conf Proc IEEE Eng Med Biol Soc. 2013;2013:2312-5. doi: 10.1109/EMBC.2013.6610000.

Robust separation of visceral and subcutaneous adipose tissues in micro-CT of mice.


One of the common practices in obesity and diabetes studies is to measure the volumes and weights of various adipose tissues, among which, visceral adipose tissue (VAT) and subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) play critical yet different physiological roles in mouse aging. In this paper, a robust two-stage VAT/SAT separation framework for micro-CT mouse data is proposed. The first stage is to distinguish adipose from other tissue types, including background, soft tissue and bone, through a robust mixture of Gaussian model. Spatial recognition relevant to anatomical locations is carried out in the second step to determine whether the adipose is visceral or subcutaneous. We tackle this problem through a novel approach that relies on evolving the abdominal muscular wall to keep VAT/SAT separated. The VAT region of interest (ROI) is also automatically set up through an atlas based skeleton matching procedure. The results of our method are compared with VAT/SAT delineations by human experts, and a high classification accuracy is demonstrated on eight micro-CT mouse volume sets.

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